The Math Counts Competition was on Saturday, February 18th here at the middle school. There were 32 students from 5 different teams: Seven Peaks, Cascade Middle School, and Cascades Academy from Bend, St. Mary’s from The Dalles and Crook County Middle School. We had 8 students compete: Tyler Shields, Aubrey Love, Casey Hewitt, Xavier Layne, Elliott Wood, Han Zhu, Abbigail Chaney, and Joey Stenbeck. Tyler, Han and Elliott are in 7th grade and the rest are in 8th grade. Xavier, Tyler, and Joey participated last year but this was the first year for everyone else.
Our team took second overall, and Seven Peaks took first. Casey Hewitt was the overall individual first place winner. The top team and the top two individuals get to go to the state competition in Wilsonville on March 18th where they compete against about 70 other students. The top 4 students from that competition get to represent the state of Oregon at the national competition later in the school year. That competition has been in places like Orlando and Boston in the last couple years. What these students are able to do is pretty amazing. You go and listen to what they can do and you’re just blown away. It’s a great opportunity for them and it’s pretty fantastic of Math Counts and people like Tom Headley from Bend Research to put it on. The kids have a great experience and enjoy competing.
The contest is made up of three rounds. The first round is the Sprint Round. They get 40 minutes to answer 30 questions individually. The questions get tougher and tougher as the round goes on. These problems are almost all word problems and students need to do all the arithmetic on their own because no calculators are allowed. The second round is called the Target Round. In this round, students get two longer problems to solve in just six minutes. When time is up, they get two more problems for six minutes. This happens four times. These problems tend to get more difficult too. Students are also on their own in this round but they can use calculators. The last round is the team round. They get 20 minutes working in groups of four to solve 10 problems. Tyler, Xavier, Casey, and Joey were on one team while Aubrey, Abby, Han and Elliott were on the other. Their scores from each round are averaged and added together and a winner is determined.
They seemed to have such a good time together. It seemed like all the teams did. I was really happy for them and proud of them. They put a lot of effort into their work. I am really happy for Casey too. He puts a lot into everything he does and it really pays off. He will represent our school and community well.
Here are some quotes from a couple kids. I only got to talk to three today so I will try to get some more for you tomorrow if you want.
Abbigail Chaney said, “It was so much fun! Getting to do math with my friends and competing against other students in our area was the best part. I liked the food too.”
Joey Stenbeck said, “I just wanted the competition. It was fun hanging out with friends. The food was good too.”
Casey Hewitt said, “I was surprised but it was nice to hear that I won. The best part of it all was that I learned new things.” About going to state, he said, ” I feel confident in my abilities but I know I could learn more.”